Bong Go: ‘Meet and greet’ events with OFWs not funded by gov’t

Special Assistant to the President Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go on Sunday clarified that the meet-and-greet events he attends in different countries where he mingles with overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) are not funded by the government.

“The government is not spending any single peso on occasions like this. I have Filipino friends who invite me and organize these events and I reach out to them to make them happy,” Go said in a meet-and-greet event with overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) at VIPS Restaurant in South Korea.

The presidential top aide also explained that his main purpose in attending such events is to campaign for President Rodrigo Duterte’s peace and order advocacy.

“Peace and order is the priority of the president especially because our (OFWs) who left their children in the Philippines want them to be secure at night, that’s why we prioritize peace and order. That is part of his campaign promise,” he said in Filipino.

Go added that he and his boss, Duterte, understand the sadness OFWs feel as they toil in another country to work in order to give a bright future for their families.

“To our president, they are the true heroes because the sadness from being away from your family can’t be compensated with any amount of money. This is an official visit and the president and I understand because we’re also unhappy in Manila during weekends when our families are in Davao,” he said.

As the president’s closest aide, Go reiterated that his main goal is to serve Duterte and the country in any way he can and not to drum up his preparations for his own political career.

“I have to do a lot of work for President Duterte and politics is not part of my plan. Just like the president before, I’ll leave it all to God, destiny, if I run for senator,” he said.

“I’m not here to campaign. The reason why I’m here is to visit the OFWs. Helping fire victims, visiting those who lost their loved ones and reaching out to those in need are part of my job as special assistant of the president,” he added.

Go recalled the story of Angelo Claveria, the Ilonggo worker slain in South Korea, where he personally helped bring his remains back to the country.

Go encouraged his bashers to join him in helping Filipinos nationwide instead of accusing him of campaigning early for the 2019 senatorial race.

“We haven’t talked about the line up of PDP or of the administration as of now, there’s no official list yet…I urge those who are accusing me of campaigning to stop and let’s just help our Filipino brethren,” he said.

Communications Secretary Martin Andanar, Assistant Secretary Mocha Uson and actors Ryan Bang, Robin Padilla and Philip Salvador joined Go in the meet-and-greet event. PNA